The Vital Point of History and Memory: The Periodization Problem in History and Le Goff’s Periodization Conception


The periodization of history means more than dividing time into specific segments. In this respect, periodization must not be considered as only a matter of discussion inside the field of history. The fact that periodization implies characteristic factors makes it a problematic for other social sciences. In the context of sociology, the most important among these factors are memory and memory construction. Vital point of history and memory, periodization implies a more special meaning and – whilst actually it is essential to history – has a role of memory construction when coupled with an ideological formation. In other words, periodization is a memory construction. This work covers Jacques Le Goff’s approach of history and the relation between periodization and memory in regard to his concept of periodization. Le Goff’s discussion around the periodization of the modern western history issue and problematizing relative to the content of periodization allows history and memory’s connection and reveals the relation between periodization and ideology. In this context, the objective of this work is to run a discussion about the relation between periodization and memory (and its construction) through Le Goff’s conception of the periodization issue. That discussion can only be run by including relation paths such as history-memory-sociology. In this sense, we will suggest that, on the one hand, periodization is essential to history and, on the other hand, it gives ground to the production of a mechanism of dominance through its aspect of memory construction. In addition to this, we will put forward certain suggestion in order to overcome that barrier.


History periodization memory construction of memory sociology Jacques Le Goff ideology historiography